Sat | Oct 21, 2017

Potential constitutional challenge from Nugent

Published:Wednesday | March 22, 2017 | 12:00 AMSyranno Baines
Latoya Nugent

With the unwavering support of the Tambourine Army, women's-rights advocate Latoya Nugent has expressed that she is contemplating a constitutional challenge to how the provision of the Cybercrimes Act under, which she was arrested and charged, was used by the State.

Under Section 9 (1) of the Cybercrimes Act, which speaks to the use of a computer for malicious communication, in the case of a first offence, Nugent faces a maximum fine of $4 million or imprisonment of up to four years, or both, if convicted.

Nugent told The Gleaner that she was very concerned about the manner in which the State interpreted and applied provisions under the Cybercrimes Act.

THREAT TO DEMOCRACY

"It is my opinion that such an interpretation and application betray the spirit of the legislation and the intent of the legislators. I am also of the opinion that such an interpretation and application of the law constitute a threat to our democracy, the rights and freedoms afforded to citizens under the Constitution of Jamaica, and could potentially be considered a breach of a number of international conventions to which Jamaica is signatory," said Nugent.

She added: "Such an interpretation and application of the Cybercrimes Act could potentially criminalise and cripple the work of human-rights defenders in Jamaica who engage in cyberactivism as a form of advocacy towards securing a better Jamaica for women and children."

syranno.baines@gleanerjm.com